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maestrowork
08-21-2004, 11:25 PM
Got a response from them. From their website, it seems like they have represented some legit authors with real publications. However, P&E says "not recommended" because they wanted "only Latino and Asian" writers. Is that a problem? (p.s. I'm Asian) Are there any more legit issues with them to be "not recommended"?

Thanks.

James D Macdonald
08-22-2004, 04:24 AM
Here's the full text of the P&E entry:

<blockquote><strong><em>Quote:</em></strong><hr>Barbara J. Zitwer Literary Agency: a literary agency. $ Not recommended. 11/29/03: a writer reports agency interested in Spanish and Chinese writers only.<hr></blockquote>

Looks to me like the "not recommended" came first, while the 11/29/03 update was informational.

You might try writing to Dave privately to see what the scoop is. Also ask Ann or Victoria.

<a href="http://www.agentresearch.com/" target="_new">www.agentresearch.com/</a> indicates she may charge an up-front fee.

DaveKuzminski
08-22-2004, 06:12 AM
She charges for copies up front. Optionally, writers can provide the agency with ten copies. The recommendation is not based upon what the agency prefers to represent.

maestrowork
08-22-2004, 09:54 PM
Other than charging for copies (or requesting) are there anything worth worrying about? If they have sold titles...

(read one comment on the net that she's a "prolific" seller)

DaveKuzminski
08-22-2004, 10:53 PM
Please understand that there are some fine lines of logic that have to be followed in cases such as this. IF P&E makes exceptions to its criteria, then that leaves it open to criticism that it's been bought off or plays favorites. For our recommendations to carry any weight against those who would scam other writers, P&E has to apply its criteria equally.

We rely upon writers recognizing that the agency has a track record of sales and that our recommendation can generally be safely ignored in such cases. That is why we try to list whether an agent or agency has legitimate sales to its credit.

Edited to fix verb usage. Really, I know how to use verbs properly, but I lose sight of what's written at times in these boxes.

vstrauss
08-22-2004, 11:27 PM
Also, at least in the past, this agency offered an expensive critique service to writers it rejected (I haven't gotten a report of this in at least a year, though).

Zitwer has quite a number of sales.

- Victoria

maestrowork
08-23-2004, 12:09 AM
Thanks, Dave and Victoria. So I gather that she may charge for some services, but at the same time, she has had quite a number of legit sales. It's kind of a buyer beware type of thing.

Thanks!

SRHowen
08-23-2004, 03:00 AM
I have more than found P&E a useful site. it saved me from some scams because once I read that an agent was not recommended, I went and did research and made up my mind if I wanted to sub to that agent or not. I also often e-mailed Victoria and asked her about any agency I was not sure of.

Not everyone will do this, they will see not recommended and move on.

And i do see that you put that little $ next to agents who have made legit big sales, most of the time. In the cases where you skip that for whatever reason, and the agent does make good sales, a writer who doesn't do research would skip over that agency. And if they went to the agent's web site--and saw legit sales listed, say the agent claims to rep John DeLancie and Ed Greenwood, and lists many sales in the past year to big houses--I know I would have thought, Hey, but Dave at P&E says and therefore I would suspect the agent's claims.

The trouble with finding an agent is that there is a sea of them out there, and some do not take on unpublished writers AT ALL.

So if you don't do your research and make sure your listings are fair and accurate (as in the case of legit sales) you may be excluding an agent who indeed will take on unpublished writers.

Perhaps you should expand that little $ symbol to say legit sales, but So the writer can make a better assessment. And be sure that you have included the fact that an agent with fees or that sometimes gives the option of paying a fee is listed in the first place as having a good sales record.

After all, P & E is every writers (or should be), first stop on the agent highway.

Shawn

DaveKuzminski
08-23-2004, 04:34 AM
Well, what P&E is doing is posting that dollar sign next to anyone who's made a sale this year. This leaves out some who had sales in years past but not this year. The reason for this is that we don't have access yet to sales for anything prior to this year. In some cases where the sale wasn't posted to any of the sources P&E uses, we may never have that information.

ganesha6
06-28-2005, 10:57 PM
Barbara Zitwer got back to me today. She wants to charge me 3200.00 to fix the big problems in my novel. She wrote to me with tons of praise when she was half way through then pulled back after she finished and said she could only do it with an upfront fee.

Gravity
06-28-2005, 11:37 PM
Cheese on a cracker. One would think, with so much info on the Net about this type of stuff, these agents would get a clue and cut it out. I mean, $3200 for an edit?? A good writing group can help you with it for free.

Sheesh. I'd say the word is definitely out.

John

Perks
06-28-2005, 11:47 PM
Cheese on a cracker. One would think, with so much info on the Net about this type of stuff, these agents would get a clue and cut it out. I mean, $3200 for an edit?? A good writing group can help you with it for free.

Sheesh. I'd say the word is definitely out.

John


That's a good point. Why DO they still do it?? I'm still a writing toddler, but I know that it doesn't take much research to know what to look out for. How do they get away with it? At $3200, I guess you need only a very few victims to make it worth your while...

IWrite
06-28-2005, 11:47 PM
Cheese on a cracker. One would think, with so much info on the Net about this type of stuff, these agents would get a clue and cut it out. I mean, $3200 for an edit?? A good writing group can help you with it for free.
Babs is obviously a scammer -

But $3,200 to have a professional editor do a major edit on a 100K word manuscript is not out of line. The amount of help one can get from input from a writing group is limited by the ability of the writer to apply the feedback. Editors do more than merely critique.

Trapped in amber
06-28-2005, 11:58 PM
Thanks for the warning. :Sun:

You can check an agency you're querying here, at Preditors and Eitors and Writer Beware:

http://www.anotherealm.com/prededitors/pubagent.htm

http://www.sfwa.org/beware/

ganesha6
06-29-2005, 12:28 AM
Thanks for commenting.
I have been bummed out all day.

Maryn
06-29-2005, 01:25 AM
That is indeed bummerific, but be thankful you found out before signing that $3200 check, eh? Relax this evening, count blessings if you're the type, then start fresh tomorrow.

Maryn

Cheryll
06-29-2005, 03:18 AM
I agree with Maryn. Fix yourself a cold one and sit back and think about what you can do with that $3200 that you did NOT send to this scam artist!

Not making light... I know it's disappointing to get a "nibble" that turns out to be a scammer. Been there, done that.

Cheryll

ganesha6
06-29-2005, 06:12 AM
Thanks. It really helps to know that others are out there dealing with this...tough stuff. Good luck to everyone. I feel better knowing I am contributing to stopping this kind of thing from happening to someone else.

D.J.
06-29-2005, 06:44 AM
Thanks. It really helps to know that others are out there dealing with this...tough stuff. Good luck to everyone. I feel better knowing I am contributing to stopping this kind of thing from happening to someone else.

That's right, you are definitely helping others by your post. Sorry, I also know how it feels. Just hang in there, think of how you didn't lose the $3,200 and do count your blessings like other posters said!

ganesha6
06-29-2005, 05:07 PM
Thanks again.....

CaoPaux
11-14-2007, 03:26 AM
http://www.barbarajzitweragency.com/index.html

FWIW, the Spanish & Chinese thing (from the Submissions page):


We are actively looking to represent Hispanic writers who are living in the US and writing in English or Spanish and Spanish writers from every country whose work can appeal to US readers as well as international readers. We read Spanish so if you are writing in Spanish, you need only send an English synopsis with your manuscript. We are working with many Chinese writers and looking for other young, modern Chinese authors. We are very keen on representing authors from all over the world. When a Spanish or foreign language manuscript is submitted to us, it will usually take us at least one month to respond.

lepidecko
07-10-2008, 10:26 PM
Hey,

Does anyone have any current info on this agency? There was some speculation a few years ago, but nothing solid. They have Matchstick men on their website and a few other sales that are traceable on amazon (though not necessarily traceble back to them). Anybody had any direct dealings?

CaoPaux
07-14-2008, 08:37 PM
Her PM page: http://www.publishersmarketplace.com/members/alicea/

still alive
07-19-2009, 06:47 PM
I'm a year late with this I see, but I didn't do my homework and just sent an email query to Barbara J. Zitwer, and it bounced--for which after reading these posts, I thank my guardian angel!

I'd been a little uncomfortable when on the submissions part of her website, the very first thing was that she only accepted email queries, while the very last thing said queries must be sent to this address--a mail address.

I can't help just out of curiousity wondering if she got caught...or writers [unlike me :( ]got smart.

still alive

CaoPaux
07-19-2009, 07:11 PM
The mailing address is for manuscript submissions, not queries.

nicolesingslave
11-05-2009, 09:59 AM
LOL, Still Alive. It's now a MUST for me to do a search on AW or P&E before I query.

Just to add a few more links (tricks I learn from the mods here). :-)
51 hits in googlebooks:
http://books.google.com/books?lr=&q=%22Barbara+J.+Zitwer%22&btnG=Search+Books

16 hits in Amazon:
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_ss?url=search-alias%3Dstripbooks&field-keywords=Barbara+J.+Zitwer&x=0&y=0

Here's the link of the 'not recommended' label in P&E, most likely earned from the editorial fees: http://www.anotherealm.com/prededitors/pealb.htm

A wikipedia on Ms.Zitwer :-O:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barbara_Zitwer

Some old complaints from 2002:
http://www.writers.net/forum/read/10/13075/13075Vf

Vortigern99
05-04-2012, 08:22 AM
Greetings, all! This is my first post here; I've been lurking the last few weeks, using the "Index" thread to research agents prior to querying.

Yesterday, Wednesday May 2nd, Barbara Zitwer requested a full manuscript within an hour of receiving my query. I sent her the full ms. of my 81,000-word novel yesterday afternoon.

This morning, Thursday May 3rd, Barbara and I began a cheerful e-mail correspondence about my novel. She's been very encouraging and positive about the work, and says she feels it has "international appeal". (Yay!)

This afternoon, Barbara said she had read enough of the novel to know she wants to represent me! This is thrilling news, of course, as I am as-yet-unpublished (except as a copy editor and, briefly, a comic strip author). She sent me an agreement to sign, stipulating a two-year term, "irrevocable" representation "in perpetuity" and "coupled with an interest", and her right to represent all works I create within the two-year term.

I have been researching the bejeezus out of Ms. Zitwer, and looking into the legal questions posed by her proffered agreement. I'm getting mixed signals: she's awesome; she's not so awesome; she charges fees for editing; she doesn't do that anymore; she's a scammer; no way, she has a proven and prolific sales record.

Can anyone offer me a guiding light through the deep, dense forest of facts and rumors regarding Barbara Zitwer? Thanks in advance for any and all insight.

augusto
05-04-2012, 11:19 PM
She sent me an agreement to sign, stipulating a two-year term, "irrevocable" representation "in perpetuity" and "coupled with an interest", and her right to represent all works I create within the two-year term.


This all sounds scary to me. As does the rest of this thread.

Vortigern99
05-05-2012, 10:03 PM
So, I'll take that as a collective "no".

MaLanie1971
08-08-2012, 09:44 PM
I just recieved a request for a full from this agent. And now I'm not sure what to do after reading this thread. Does anyone have any positive experience working with this agent?

MaLanie1971
09-04-2012, 04:41 AM
I'm just bumping this up to see if anyone has worked with this agent.

CaoPaux
12-17-2012, 05:27 AM
Updating link: http://barbarajzitweragency.com/

mbowman
03-10-2013, 03:07 PM
So, I queried her, she got back quickly saying she wanted to see my full manuscript.

I was about to send, but now after reading this thread, not sure I should.

Kinda bummed about that--its nice to have an agent want to read your work, but you guys would know best.

newstylus
03-12-2014, 10:48 PM
This thread also stopped me from sending. These forums do a great service.